University of Waterloo Researchers Increase Hyperledger Fabric Transaction Speeds

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Researchers at the University of Waterloo in Ontario, Canada have managed to increase the speed of Hyperledger Fabric blockchain transactions almost sevenfold through a series of optimizations.

Waterloo Researchers Give Hyperledger Fabric Blockchain a Boost

According to a blog post on the University of Waterloo website, researchers have increased transaction speeds on the Hyperledger Fabric blockchain from 3,000 to 20,000 transactions per second (TPS).

“Increasing transactions throughput to 20,000 per second is a good start, but we would like to take Hyperledger Fabric even further,” said Professor Srinivasan Keshav of the Cheriton School of Computer Science at the University of Waterloo.

To boost Hyperledger Fabric’s speeds, the team of researchers developed and implemented numerous architectural optimizations, which included the redesign of the blockchain’s ordering service, transaction service, and management layer. The combination of these three steps increased transaction throughput while decreasing the delay before a data transfer begins following instructions.

“Hyperledger Fabric has many applications. Our goal was to accelerate them all by accelerating the engine underneath it. Our modifications are completely under-the-hood. Fabric’s application programming interfaces and modularity stay intact, so existing applications work just as before,” said Christian Gorenflo, a Ph.D. Candidate in the David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science.

Professor Lukasz Golab from Waterloo’s Department of Management Sciences added that the researchers are in contact with a number of “major Fabric contributors at IBM” who want to adopt the new optimizations for the upcoming official release of the blockchain. He also stated that the industry reception of their work was very positive.

Additionally, the researchers believe that they could potentially boost Fabric’s transaction speeds to 50,000 transactions per second with further optimizations in the future.

Hyperledger Fabric is one of the most popular enterprise blockchains used by a large number of corporations and institutions. More specifically, according to the project’s website, “Hyperledger is an open source collaborative effort created to advance cross-industry blockchain technologies.” By giving Fabric a boost in transaction speeds, it makes this enterprise-grade blockchain more competitive, which could give Hyperledger the leg up it needs in the “battle of the enterprise blockchains.”

An academic paper detailing the team’s work titled, “FastFabric: Scaling Hyperledger Fabric to 20,000 Transactions per Second,” will be presented at the 2019 IEEE International Conference on Blockchain and Cryptocurrency in around two weeks time.

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